NOAA 2004-R471
Contact: Ben Sherman

NOAA News Releases 2004
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At a presentation ceremony today, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration formally announced the availability of the latest addition to NOAA’s Gulf of Mexico navigational chart series, “Chart 11346 – Port Fourchon, LA and Approaches.” The chart, a critical tool in navigation, was created in recognition of the significant growth of Port Fourchon and its role in supporting the Central Gulf offshore oil industry. NOAA is an agency of the U.S. Department of Commerce.

At today’s Port Fourchon ceremony, officials from NOAA’s Office of Coast Survey presented the first prints of the new chart to the Ports Association of Louisiana and to the Greater Lafourche Port Commission. Attending from NOAA were Commander Steve Barnum, Chief Navigational Services Division of the Office of Coast Survey, along with Tim Osborn, NOAA Coastal Services, and Steve Soherr of the Navigational Services Division of Coast Survey.

“This new chart resource has been developed with the support and collaboration of the port itself, as well as shipping and offshore industries,” said Captain Roger Parsons, director of NOAA’s Office of Coast Survey. “This is part of NOAA’s continuing efforts to address the important goal of ensuring safe and efficient navigation and to support the operations of a facility that serves in providing almost 20 percent of the nation’s daily energy needs.”

“We see great value and benefit to Port Fourchon in the development and publication of this NOAA chart to serve our facility and the shipping and port industries working here every day,” said Ted Falgout, Port Fourchon executive director. “We are very thankful for NOAA’s effort.”

“Chart 11346, Port Fourchon and Approaches” covers an area in south Lafourche Parish encompassing Bayou Lafourche from the Leeville Bridge and extending south into the Gulf of Mexico to the Louisiana Offshore Oil Port operation area. An inset on the chart provides greater detail of Port Fourchon and its new expansion area along the northern boundary of the port facility.

The Office of Coast Survey, which produces nautical charts for United States waters, including its possessions and territories, is the oldest official United States government scientific office, dating back to 1807. President Thomas Jefferson established the office to encourage commerce and to support a growing economy in a safe and efficient manner following the completion of the Lewis and Clark Corps of Discovery mission.

Today the Coast Survey manages NOAA's nautical chart data collection and information program to promote safe navigation. As margins of safety narrow, consequences loom greater as cargo capacities are pushed to the limit. To meet this challenge, more current and precise information is required. New electronic navigation systems can meet the demands for greater protection of life, property, and the environment, as well as significantly improve the efficiency of maritime commerce.

The Office of Coast Survey’s Web site,, provides information on how to obtain Chart 11346.

NOAA’s National Ocean Service manages the Office of Coast Survey and is dedicated to exploring, understanding, conserving and restoring the nation’s coasts and oceans. The National Ocean Service balances environmental protection with economic prosperity in fulfilling its mission of promoting safe navigation, supporting coastal communities, sustaining coastal habitats and mitigating coastal hazards.

NOAA is dedicated to enhancing economic security and national safety through the prediction and research of weather and climate-related events and providing environmental stewardship of our nation’s coastal and marine resources.

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